There has been a lot more wonderful news about this situation since anyone last posted on it. Here's a rundown:
1) The spill has gone from being by far the biggest of it's kind, to being twice that, to now being 3 times that.
2) The ash is still killing fish now, and is going to continue killing fish for a while. From the article below: "But the ash is now killing fish. Catfish and black bass caught this week in the Clinch and Emory rivers within a mile of the Kingston plant were found to have gills 'completely coated in ash,' according to Dan Hicks, spokesman for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency... 'These fish are stressed and we know that a stressed fish is usually a dead fish,' he said."
3) The TVA decided to have itself another nice ash spill in Alabama, and to get fined for it, and to clean it up:
4) "The Tennessee Valley Authority's inspector general reported last year that agency managers have put business interests above regulatory compliance, a condition that one TVA critic says damages its culture at a time when TVA executives are collecting big bonuses." Well, it's nice to know that someone has been doing well since the stock market crash.
5) Roan County put up a huge page with a ton of info on the spill to help some of those who are affected by it.
6) TVA didn't even know how much waste was in there because since this kind of waste is unregulated, they didn't worry about tracking it:
7) The amount of ash spilled is over 100 times the amount of oil spilled out of the Exxon Valdez. The lawsuits are a comin'.
8 ) The poor folks caught in the middle of this disaster with their lost homes and damaged property are getting scammed too:
9) Those same poor folks have got a lot to worry about, for a long time:
10) The good time continues. After all that's happened, TVA deliberately dumped a bunch more sludge into the Ocoee causing a fish kill. Government agencies have already cited them, demanded another cleanup, and are testing the water for pollutants like PCB's and heavy metals. From the article: "The black and foul-smelling sludge 'overwhelmed the river and the Olympic whitewater area of the Ocoee in some places more than three feet deep.'" Also from the article, "'Fish were killed and washed downstream or killed and buried in the mud/sludge/ooze... No live fish were seen." Looks like those folks foolish enough to have hope that the Ocoee may ever be a healthy river again should think hard about the powerful forces they are up against.
11) In case you are worried about the harm caused to TVA's executives, put your mind at ease. While the taxpayers, already suffering in this bad economy, will be paying for this cleanup which has already cost many millions and will eventually cost much more than that, the TVA execs still received their 6-figure bonuses this year. So one can only say, "Well done, TVA execs! Well done."
There is so much to this tragedy, but I guess I'll quit writing now.